CWC 2023: ‘Don't think there's a player like him in world cricket,” Wasim Akram’s rich praise for Rohit Sharma

Rohit has batted with fearless approach in the ongoing World Cup.

Rohit Sharma | GettyRohit Sharma is leading the Indian team from the front in the ongoing ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup. Under his leadership, the Men in Blue have qualified for the semi-final without losing a single match in the league stage.

Opening the innings, Rohit has batted with fearless approach in the marquee event, amassing 503 runs from 9 innings at an impressive average of 55.88 and a remarkable strike rate of 121.49, including one hundred and three fifties.

On Sunday (November 12), the Indian skipper once again provided a blazing start as he slammed 61 off 54 balls with 8 fours and 2 sixes against the Netherlands in Bangalore.

The likes of Shreyas Iyer (128*), KL Rahul (102), Shubman Gill (51) and Virat Kohli (51) also took the Dutch attack to the cleaners as the hosts racked up a massive 410/4 on the board and won the match by 160 runs.

After the game, Pakistan pace legend Wasim Akram heaped praise on Rohit Sharma’s batting display in this World Cup.

"Yeah, 410/4 in 50 overs, 61 by Rohit Sharma, Gill (Shubman) 51 off 32, they scored 91 in first 10 overs, the game was over then. I mean the way they played again. Rohit Sharma 61 off 54, 8 fours, 2 sixes, mera nahi khayal aisa player duniya cricket mein hai (I don't think there's a player like him (Rohit Sharma) in world cricket). We talk about Virat Kohli, Joe Root, Kane Williamson, Babar Azam, but this guy is different. Because he makes batting look so easy, in any situation, against any bowling attack, bade araam se shots maarta hai (he hits shots effortlessly)," Akram said on A Sports.

Former Pakistan skipper Shoaib Malik, who was also part of the pane, stated, "Ye (Rohit Sharma) aisa batter hai ke paanch bowlers hote hain na opposition mein, ye paanchon ko peetta hai (he scores runs against all the five bowlers in the opposition). Jo baaki Wasim bhai ne naam liye hain na woh paachon ko nahi maarte, woh teen ko maarte hain, chhate-saatvein ko maarte hain, ye paachon ko maarta hai (the batters Wasim Akram has named they don't hit all the 5 bowlers, they hit three or at the most the sixth or the seventh (part-time) bowlers. He (Rohit Sharma) smashes all five bowlers)."

Akram added, "Woh kya kehte hain Punjab mein? Tempo hi change kar deta hai aate hi. Woh bowlers ko, opposition ko apne pad jaate hain (he changes the tempo of the game as soon as he arrives at the crease and throws the opposition bowlers completely off gear)".

Misbah-ul-Haq, another former Pakistan captain, lauded Rohit and Gill for their opening partnership of 100 runs in just 11.5 overs.

"Right from the first ball they (Rohit and Gill) were on a mission. Shayad woh ye soch ke aaye thhey ki highest runs karne hain humein, kyunki aisa lag hi nahi raha tha, woh ek baar nahi ruk rahe thhey, fast bowlers ko nikal nikal ke, har ball pe try kar rahe thhey shot aur sochti hai na teams ki hum thoda time le lein, opposition aisi hai, runs kar lein, but they batted, look at that 5.5 overs, 50 already on the board, koi ball chahe peeche hai, good length pe ball hai, aage kiya toh saamne unhone bada zabardast shot khela hai, I mean all shots like aise nahi lag raha tha jaise aap slogging kar rahe hain, proper cricketing shots, saamne front foot pe ya back foot pe, this is the beauty,” Misbah said.

Wasim Akram then left the panel in splits with a hilarious remark, "This talent has got to be natural, the hand-eye coordination. Woh kehte hain na hum cricket mein iske paas time bada iska ye matlab nahi ki iski ghadiyon ki dukaan hai! (What we say in cricket that he (Rohit Sharma) has a lot of time, that doesn't mean he owns a watch shop, it means we feel that ball is coming slow towards him)", he said.

Akram also compared Rohit Sharma with Pakistan batting great Inzamam-ul-Haq, saying that the latter also had a lot of time to play fast bowling.

"Inzamam ke paas time bahut tha, bowlers ko lagta nahi tha ki usko koi problem ho rahi hai, length aagey hai toh aagey, back hai toh back hai (Inzamam had loads of time to play his shots, it never looked to the bowlers that Inzamam was having any problem playing his shots, good length, short of length, no problem at all), same goes for Rohit Sharma," he remarked.

(With TOI Inputs)


By Salman Anjum - 13 Nov, 2023

    Share Via